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Wednesday, January 21, 2009

A quick guide to an Order of Service wording

Nowadays, the wedding ceremony programme can really be in any form you’d like, from a brief description of the ceremony to a complete rundown of every detail, the program could include a brief summary of each member of the wedding party or even an explanation on how the couple met. Wedding program wording in its most basic form is used to explain the details of your ceremony to your guests.

At least each couple and each single guest should receive a wedding program as they enter the ceremony. Always be sure to have extras on hand, as you might need them. Generally, ushers will be responsible for handing out the programs. Children can also be great for handing out programs. Alternatively they may be placed at the entrance to the ceremony, or on seating or pews.

A typical guideline to follow for the order of elements on a traditional program usually has four parts:
Introduction; Ceremony order; Wedding party; Closure or special notes

Generally the introduction will include:
Names of the bride and groom; Day and date of the ceremony; Time; Location

The order of the ceremony will outline the various segments which include:
Prelude; Seating; Vows; Readings; Processional; etc.

This section lists all participants in the wedding. Use full names rather than nicknames and always use titles such as Miss, Ms. and Mr.

The wedding party should be listed in this order:
Parents of the Bride; Parents of the Groom; Grandparents of the Bride; Grandmothers of the Groom; Maid of Honor; Bridesmaids; Flower girls; Best Men; Groomsmen; Officiant; Pianist; Soloist; etc.

As for the final section, used for closure or a special note:
Thank your guests; Honor a deceased parent, friend or member of the family; On this day of happiness, we would like to remember those who are no longer with us, especially; End with a poem or quote; Include directions to the reception.

By using this guide as a starting point for your wedding order of service wording, you can create both an attractive and informative wedding ceremony program that will be treasured by all.

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